From a marketer at Joseph Horne Company to the Vice President of Business Strategy and Creative Development at Pittsburgh Steelers, Susan McGalla’s life story is as inspiring as it is intriguing. An only daughter in a family of three children, she learned to compete hard at a tender age. This lesson, coupled with confidence and exceptional innovativeness propelled her to where she is today.
But Susan McGalla’s success was possible because there were opportunities for her to pursue. Many women aspire to be in her position, but opportunities are just out of their reach. For a long time, Women Leadership Initiatives have been thought to be the ultimate solution to gender inequality issues in business management. This idea, although exceedingly advantageous, has been proven ineffective by time – given that it has existed for ages and gender discrimination in executive management still lives with us.
Looking forward, a suitable and practical solution would be Executive Sponsorship. This is an inclusive program, where women find a sponsor that they can work with to create and pursue opportunities. The sponsor should be an executive person. The chief worth of an Executive Sponsorship program accrue to the women, in that sponsors can vouch for the women to take project manager positions when an opportunity is being pursued. When in such places, it is possible for women to rise to the ranks Susan McGalla has risen to.
On her career journey, Susan McGalla has been the President and Chief Merchandising Officer of American Eagle Outfitters, CEO of West Seal Inc. and a founder of P3 Executive Consulting where she offers expert advice to clients seeking insight in branding and talent management.
According to her, many women lack practical solutions that can be used to advance career-wise. However, career success is determined merely by hard work, confidence, and a feeling that you are not entitled to something based on your gender.